Fee-Based Libraries Were Like Netflix for Books, 200 Years ago

Kindle Unlimited has joined the ranks of Oyster and Scribd as the newest subscription based book service, but did you know this service existed hundreds of years ago?

In Philadelphia, for example, [Benjamin] Franklin and his friends formed a club in 1727 to discuss “morals, politics or natural philosophy,” as its founder explained. Franklin tried to get the members to donate their books to a joint library, but they balked. So he got 50 subscribers to kick in 40 shillings each for the purpose of ordering books from London.

And Franklin wasn’t the only one with this idea. Outlets for accessing books started cropping up on both sides of the pond. A complete revolution in book-access was born. Sound familiar?

For more information, check out the full story at the The Wall Street Journal!

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